AUBURN, Ala. - Competing for the first time in 10 months since being diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome, LSU men's tennis redshirt senior Mark Bowtell rallied to win a three-set thriller Thursday at the USTA/ITA Southern Regional at Auburn's Yarbrough Tennis Center.
Facing a 5-2 deficit in the third set, Bowtell saved three match points on the way to a comeback 4-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(4) victory against Alabama's David Vieyra in the second round of main draw singles.
"For Mark to be able to compete is victory enough at this point, but for him to actually beat a good player from Alabama, considering the circumstances in the match, is monumental and should jump start his return," LSU head coach Jeff Brown said. "We are really proud of how he fought, and we are glad to have him back."
Arias, the tournament's No. 14 seed, breezed past UAB's Chris Helliar, 6-2, 6-1, and Kennedy knocked off Troy's Tadju Davis, 6-3, 6-2.
"Several guys played well today, and I thought Boris and Harrison did a great job maintaining consistency throughout their matches," Brown said.
Ranked 18th nationally and serving as the tournament's No. 3 seed, Olivier Borsos rallied to beat Tulane's Rodrigo Rappaccioli, 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-2, to advance to the third round, and 58th-ranked and seventh-seeded Chris Simpson defeated UAB's tom Puetz, 7-5, 6-1, to claim his spot in the third round.
"Olivier and Chris struggled a little more than usual, but they played well enough to get the job done," Brown said. "We are glad to advance five guys to the next round."
Joe Hill was the only Tiger not to receive a first-round bye, and he fell to Ole Miss' Johan Backstrom, 6-3, 6-1, in the opening round.
Roger Anderson fought hard in the second round against the tournament's No. 1 seed in fifth-ranked Nik Scholtz of Ole Miss, but he lost a tight second set to drop the match, 6-2, 7-6(5). Tam Trinh fell in his second-round match, 6-4, 7-5, to Tulane's Dominik Koepfer, and Stefan Szacinski was forced to retire due to injury after trailing Tulane's Alex Van Cott, 6-4, 1-1.
Kennedy, Arias and Borsos will begin their third-round matches at 8:30 a.m. CT Friday, and Bowtell and Simpson will play their singles matches at 9:30 a.m.
Szacinski, Hill and Anderson will compete in consolation singles first-round matches at 8:30 a.m., and Trinh, who received a bye, will play his second-round match at 10 a.m.
LSU begins main draw doubles Friday, and all four Tiger duos will begin second-round action at 4 p.m.
Follow @LSUTennis on Twitter for match updates throughout the tournament, and connect with the team on www.Facebook.com/LSUtennis.
USTA/ITA Southern Regional Championships
Auburn, Ala. - Yarbrough Tennis Center
Main Draw Singles - First Round
Johan Backstrom (Ole Miss) def. Joe Hill (LSU), 6-3, 6-1
Main Draw Singles - Second Round
#5 (1) Nik Scholtz (Ole Miss) def. Roger Anderson (LSU), 6-2, 7-6(5)
Harrison Kennedy (LSU) def. Tadju Davis (Troy), 6-3, 6-2
Mark Bowtell (LSU) def. David Vieyra (Alabama), 4-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(4)
(14) Boris Arias (LSU) def. Chris Helliar (UAB), 6-2, 6-1
Alex Van Cott (Tulane) def. Stefan Szacinski (LSU), 6-4, 1-1 (retired)
Dominik Koepfer (Tulane) def. Tam Trinh (LSU), 6-4, 7-5
#18 (3) Olivier Borsos (LSU) def. Rodrigo Rappaccioli (Tulane), 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-2
#58 (7) Chris Simpson (LSU) def. Tom Puetz (UAB), 7-5, 6-1
Main Draw Singles - Third Round
Harrison Kennedy (LSU) vs. #56 (6) William Kallberg (Ole Miss), 8:30 a.m. CT
(14) Boris Arias (LSU) vs. Joe Young (Tulane), 8:30 a.m.
#18 (3) Olivier Borsos (LSU) vs. Becker O'Shaughnessey (Alabama), 8:30 a.m.
Mark Bowtell (LSU) vs. (9) Idan Mark (Tulane), 9:30 a.m.
#58 (7) Chris Simpson (LSU) vs. Adrian Skogeng (Ole Miss), 9:30 a.m.
Main Draw Doubles - Second Round
Joe Hill/Mark Bowtell (LSU) vs. Becker O'Shaughnessey/Jarryd Botha (Alabama), 4 p.m.
(3) Chris Simpson/Stefan Szacinski (LSU) vs. Mansingh Athare/Patrick Eichler (Troy), 4 p.m.
Harrison Kennedy/Boris Arias (LSU) vs. Elliott Barnwell/Garrison Laduca (Samford), 4 p.m.
(8) Roger Anderson/Tam Trinh (LSU) vs. Zac Dunkle/Alex Sajonz (Samford), 4 p.m.
Consolation Singles - First Round
Stefan Szacinski (LSU) vs. Vasco Valverde (Southern Miss), 8:30 a.m.
Joe Hill (LSU) vs. Brian Conlon (Alabama), 8:30 a.m.
Roger Anderson (LSU) vs. Cody Hall (South Alabama), 8:30 a.m.
Tam Trinh (LSU) - BYE
Consolation Singles - Second Round
Tam Trinh (LSU) vs. Alex Sajonz (Troy), 10 a.m.
Oct. 18 - Main Draw Singles First/Second rounds & Doubles First Round
Oct. 19 - Main Draw Singles & Doubles Second/Third Rounds; Consolation Singles First/Second Rounds
Oct. 20 - Main Draw Singles Quarterfinals & Doubles Third Round/Quarterfinals; Consolation Singles continues
Oct. 21 - Main Draw Singles & Doubles Semifinals; Singles Consolation Championship
Oct. 22 - Main Draw Singles & Doubles Championship